In rugby football, a scrum refers to a tight-packed formation of players with their heads down who attempt to gain possession of the ball. Collaboration is crucial and you have to be able to act in changing circumstances.
Very simplified, you could say that managing a project comes down to breaking it down into a lot of small to do’s, and then with the team, deal with them in the most clever way.
A key principle of Scrum is the recognition that during a project you can change your mind about what you want and/or need for your project, and that unpredicted challenges cannot be easily addressed in a traditional predictive or planned manner.
How to begin?
1. Choose the product owner
This is the person with the vision of what needs to be done. He or she inventories risks writes the stories that need to be done and checks what is feasible and what can be done.
2. Compose your team
Who will do the actual work? Keep your teams small (3 to 9 people).
3. Choose a scrum master
This person guides the team and helps to remove impediments to the ability of the team to deliver the product goals and deliverables.
The scrum master is not a traditional team lead or project manager but acts as a buffer between the team and any distracting influences.
4. Create a product backlog
The product backlog comprises an ordered list of requirements that a scrum team maintains for a product.
It consists of features, bug fixes, non-functional requirements, etc.—whatever needs doing in order to successfully deliver a viable product.
The product owner orders the product backlog items (PBIs) based on considerations such as risk, business value, dependencies, and date needed.
5. Refine the product backlog
Estimate how much work each issue needs. The team must check if an issue is doable. Each issue has to be showable in a demo. Plan your backlog not by estimating immediately in hours.
Use terms like ‘small, medium, large’ or the Fibonacci numbers (1,2,3,5,8,13,21, …) After a couple of weeks, you’ll see how many things you can do.
6. Sprint planning
A sprint is a combination of tasks within a fixed time frame. Sprints always have a fixed time frame which varies from 1 to 4 weeks.
The team takes a look at the items in the backlog and estimates how much can be done in one sprint.
The number of issues that the team can execute in one sprint is called the team’s speed. One should always try to get more issues done in one sprint.
Also important is that once you have set the items of the sprint, you don’t change that anymore. Nothing can be added! New issues are for the next sprint.
7. Make the work visible
You can do this using a scrum board with 3 columns: ‘to do’, ‘work in progress’ and ‘done’. (in development you could also add a column ‘testing’)
8. Daily stand-up of daily scrum
On a daily basis you organize a short meeting that will take 15 minutes tops and answer the following questions:
- What did you do yesterday to help the team accomplish this sprint?
- What are you going to do today?
- Are there any obstacles standing between you or your team and achieving the sprint goals?
9. Sprint demo
At the end of every sprint, you hold a meeting with the team where you discuss what has been achieved. Each team member presents their part of what has been made or realized.
10. Sprint evaluation
After the team has shown the progress of the sprint, you hold a meeting to discuss what has gone good, what could have been done better and what needs to be improved in the next sprint.
In this post, we gave you the basics of Scrum, and you should know you can apply this in different ways for your e-commerce project. It brings great advantages if you apply this, both in time and inefficiency.
Our clients contribute to our knowledge and we constantly implicate them in our sprints – even if they don’t realize it -.
Make sure to read also our other interesting blog posts like the necessity of an e-commerce business plan for your e-commerce project.